Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Would the last person walking into the light please turn it off



I didn't think the world was supposed to end until December 21, 2012, but Harold Camping,  the leader of the Oakland, Calif.-based Family Radio Worldwide (an independent Christian ministry)  has calculated that May 21, 2011 is Judgement Day based on his reading of the Bible. Camping is an 89-year retired civil engineer, so he must be right. Though I imagine an 89-year old doesn't have much to lose when they say the world is coming to an end.

Technically, May 21, is the day of the Rapture when the righteous are taken up into heaven while the rest of us remain. The world doesn't really end until October. If this is true, I'm kind of looking forward to five months without the nutjob Rapture freaks pointing their holier than thou fingers at everyone.

Harold Camping doesn't predict that May 21, 2011 is Judgement Day, he guarantees it!
Camping apparently predicted the world was going to end in September of 1994, too. So we at least know he has some experience with these types of things. Camping claims that about 200 million people will be raptured and the remaining 97 percent of the population will simply cease to exist five months later.

The interesting angle to Camping's rantings is that the only way you can get on the rapture list is if god decided  before he created the world that you were going to be saved.  It doesn't matter what kind of good things you do or how much you pray, if you aren't on the list, you ain't getting into the rapture club.

So if everything is predestined by god, then what is the point of any of the hoopla about the end of the world? If it was all preordained then why are Camping and his followers driving around in vans emblazoned with "Judgement Day: May, 21, 2011?"  You can't recruit new members to a club that is already full.

If there were any truth to this crap, the ultimate irony would be that the rapture occurs and Camping and all of his followers were left sitting in their bunkers watching non-believers sucked up into the mother ship. Now that would be righteous!

2 comments:

Clara said...

Oh so many things to love about this post. I have always wondered why the "end of the world" matters so much. We all die. What difference does it make if we all do it together, or in a big group, or one at a time? What if we are preordained to be Raptured (by the way, this is an invention of contemporary religion -- there is no "rapture" in the bible according to my theological source) and what if we disappear at the appointed date against our will? Is there such thing as the "returns" desk in heaven?

Time said...

Amen! Even if there is a heaven, it's not a place I'd like to be if it lets in people like Camping.